The Chosen, written by Chaim Potok, portrays the life of two Jewish boys and their upbringings. Though they lived only five blocks from each other, Danny and Reuven lived very different lives, primarily because of the influence of their fathers. The two became very good friends and continued their friendship through college. They grew and learned with each other and also from each other. The characters, the tone and diction of the novel, the setting, the theme, and the meaning of the title all come together to create a stimulating novel. .
The two main characters in the novel are alike and different in many ways. They lived in the same neighborhood, were both Jewish, but due to their father's upbringings had different views. From each other they grew different ideas and learned to respect different beliefs. Reuven Malter is a traditional Orthodox Jew; he is intelligent and talented in math and Talmud study, he hopes to become a Rabbi in his later years. Danny Saunders is a Hasidic Jew; he is intelligent as well and has a deep interest in studying psychology and one day he is suppose to take over his fathers Hasidic dynasty and become Tzaddik. The boy's fathers shared some different beliefs on how to raise their children. Reuven's relationship with his father is based on a constant, easy flow of conversation; Danny's relationship with his father is based on an understanding of each other and talking to each other through silence. Neither of there beliefs is wrong and in the end Reuven and Danny respect each other's differences.
Throughout the novel the tone changes. In the beginning it was pleasant and tolerable. Reuven and Danny became great friends and although they had some different beliefs they could get along and understand each other. During the middle of the novel, the tone is tense and strained due to the silence between Danny and his father. It was a different way of communication and at times was hard for Reuven to understand.